Monday, July 14, 2008
Myrtle Beach, SC
Melinda, Lee and I came for the week to stay at Myrtle Beach in our camper. We had a good trip and got here about 2:30pm Sunday afternoon. The campground is full and very busy. We got unloaded and set up and then we went for an early dinner at Crabby Mike's. We ate crab legs until I was miserable! Then we went to the grocery store and bought some supplies and returned to the camper. After we got the groceries unloaded and put away we took a walk on the beach. The weather was very pleasant. It was about 7:00pm and it wasn't muggy and there was a nice breeze so we were able to enjoy the walk. Once back at the camper we sat outside in our zero gravity lounge chairs and enjoyed some talk until about 8:00pm. I was getting so sleepy by then that I went on to bed. I watched about 30 mins of TV but was gone and slept a solid 11 1/2 hours!
This morning I made eggs and sausage and toast for breakfast. Melinda cleaned up and we got ourselves together and went on the beach. I can't take much sun or heat so I knew I couldn't be out there too long. I get sun poisoning, sunburn and skin cancer if I don't watch it and I'm on medication that can aggravate sun exposure. So I slicked up with sun screen and we sat and talked awhile. It's not too humid and the heat is bearable so it's been another good day. Sunny and the beach is FULL of people! We headed into the water. It was cool without being cold. The shock of cold water on my back is very unpleasant and it's hard for me to get in water in a pool or the ocean because of that. Once I'm in I enjoy it but getting there is uncomfortable. I swam with them about 25 mins and I was getting tired so I got out. They stayed out there another 20 mins and Melinda almost got too tired to make it back. Lee had to drag her back. If it hadn't been for him I would have had to get the lifeguard out there. She wasn't in danger of drowning just so much as she was too tired to fight the undertow to get to the beach. The sea was calm and the undertow wasn't too strong but they had gotten out there in chest high water and that makes it hard to swim against and make headway when you are fatigued.
We came back to the camper and I got my shower and made some beanie weanies for lunch. Then we all settled down for a nice summer's nap! I got up about 2:00pm and cleaned up the kitchen and then headed to the coffee house for a chai latte and some computer time. Contrary to May and June, when I had the coffee house virtually to myself, it was pretty busy in here this afternoon. A lot of young people with their lap tops hanging out in the cool. As I walked through the campground you could hear or see people taking their siestas. An occasional snore, the drone of a TV in a tent, people with books on their laps in their lounge chairs, little kids bicycling around and around (do they ever get tired?), camper air conditioners clattering...
It has changed a lot since I was a child. I remember that campgrounds were more full of tents and popups and it was a curiosity to see a big RV. And you didn't have TV's, laptops, zero gravity lounge chairs, beach umbrellas, etc. You laid out on the beach on old quilts or towels and a few had the old strap lounge chairs. Lucky people might have a beach umbrella. When I was a teenager they came out with the cheap plastic strap lounge chairs. Everyone had one of those but they really weren't comfortable because the straps would leave marks all over your back and the back of your legs. Plus, being plastic, you sweated to death on them. But it was better than nothing. You left your black and white, 3 channel TV at home and you played cards, board games, talked, etc. As a teenager the teens would congregate at the game room and ice cream shop on the campground. You piled up like puppies in the tent or little camper enduring any "hardship" because you were at the beach. At my age now, it's not worth the trip if I can't be comfortable but, as a kid, comfort was relative. I remember it being so hot and muggy with no place to get away from it except with a box fan. We'd be alseep but our damp hair and rosy cheeks and sheen of sweat would betray our discomfort. We ate bologna and cheese sandwiches and Granddaddy would try to catch fish hoping we could have a fish fry. My parents couldn't afford to take us out to eat at the beach when we were real little. When we visited our friends who lived at the beach, they would take us crabbing and then we would eat buckets full of crabs that they steamed out in their backyard. That was so much fun! As a newly married, teenager I ate my first Mexican food at Rosa Linda's at Myrtle Beach. We would go down to the Grand Strand and eat a hot dog and go on a few rides.
I found these photos doing a Google search of camping in the 1960's.
Here are photos from the 1960's of young people on the beach. Notice no lounge chairs or umbrellas, no coolers. They are using blankets and towels and the old straw beach bags and hats.
Here are photos on the beach today. Notice the chairs, umbrellas, shelters, wagons, coolers, floats, etc.
But now, there are more trailers and big bus campers with few tents or popups. We have air conditioning, cable TV, laptop computers, coffee houses, zero gravity lounge chairs, umbrellas and beach shelters. We have restaurants of all varieties and every income level from hot dogs to gourmet meals. We have golf carts, electric scooters, mopeds. We have everything kind of toy and leisure equipment that you can think of and our comfort is most assured.
I miss some of the things from the old days but I have to admit that I'm a big fan of the modern improvements to our beach trips. I love my comfort and conveniences. I'm almost shocked when sand gets in my shoes or the water is cold on my back as I go in, or my bathing suit chafes due to the sand and heat or mosquitos bite. Like, where did that come from? But, in comparison to olden days, we don't suffer and I'm thankful for that!!!!
What a life! Is God good or what?
Here are photos I took of some of the campsites around us and you can see the difference. There are rows and rows like this of trailers (campers, Recreational Vehicles, RV's) and SUVs and trucks. Very little tent camping, a few more pop ups but mostly trailers from smallers ones to the megacampers!
And our trailers aren't big enough, we have to have awning porches, screened rooms and, in this case, an outdoor bathroom tent.
We have extra refrigerators, TV's, some even had their own faux palm trees with white Christmas lights or street lights with their name on signs.
These people made their porch a living room with patio chairs and ottomans, TV, big cooler between the chairs. Then they put up a tent for their cooking area and they have their grill, extra tables, etc out there.
Even though there is free cable, some people prefer their satellite TV.
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